You just hired a new staff member in your optical practice that you believe will be a great fit with your current team. But, how do you make the transition into a new team, office environment, and role better for everyone involved?
Fitting in at a new job isn't always easy, especially if you're joining a team of people who have been working together for years and already feel like family. It can be intimidating and ultimately lead to an unhappy work environment for everyone. It's important to set an example and display an attitude that is welcoming to your new hires in order to achieve success. We've got a few ideas that will hopefully lead to better planning and a solid team dynamic in your practice.
Involve All Staff in the Hiring Process
In order to set the stage for a successful new employee you should include your entire staff in the hiring process. This will help to reassure that a new employee isn't going to be taking any roles or responsibilities away from their job, and it will also make everyone feel valued as they have input on the new candidates.
Include Everyone in On the Training
Once your team has selected a new hire, make sure that everyone is involved in the new hire's training process in one way or another. While the new hire might not need to know the details of everyone's job, there is surely something they can learn from everyone in your office. Being trained from individual staff members will provide quality one-on-one time with the new hire and will help eliminate insecurities of someone coming in and "knowing it all".
Dedicate One Employee to Take Them Under Their Wing
If including everyone in on the training process doesn't seem realistic in your practice, dedicate one of your top employees to take the new hire under their wing. Providing the new hire with a mentor right off the bat is a good way to give them someone to turn to when they need help.
Schedule Individual Lunches
People like working with people that they get along with. Make sure that your staff is putting in effort towards getting to know the new hire on a more personal level. Set up a schedule of days for the new hire to go to lunch or coffee with different members of the team (you could even offer to pick up the bill). This will help everyone get more comfortable with working with one another.
Plan an Extracurricular Team Event
Once the new hire has passed the "probation period" and is comfortable in their new position, celebrate! Schedule an off-site team event. It could be anything from happy hour to bowling to an escape room to a football game - anything that's affordable. This helps to solidify the team you have built in your office and reinforce genuine trust and connection.
If you end up running into bumps down the road with certain employees clashing when it comes to their work styles and habits, you can try having your staff take personality quizzes. These tests can be a great way to start a conversation, gain insight into how others work, and develop the best tactics and strategies for working with different personality types. A book we can suggest (which includes a personality quiz), is Strengths Finder, by Tom Rath.
We've put together an ebook with all staff management tips. Download your copy below!